Charles II, 1661: An Act for a free and voluntary p[re]sent to his Majesty.

Page 307

Statutes of the Realm: Volume 5, 1628-80. Originally published by Great Britain Record Commission, s.l, 1819.

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Reasons for this Grant.

The King may issue Commissions under the Great Seal for receiving Subscriptions; Acquittances by Receivers to be given without Fee. In what case Payment returned into Exchequer. Proviso as to Process.

Wee your Majesties most loyall and obedient subjects the Lords and Commons in Parliament assembled taking into considerac[i]on your Majesties great and important occasions for a speedy supply of moneys which can no wayes be soe readily raised as by a free and voluntary present to your Majesty from those who are able and willing to aide your Majesty in this suddain exigencie as a testimony of theire affections to your Majesty and in ease of the poorer sort of your subjects doe therefore beseech your Majesty that it may be enacted And be it enacted by the Kings most Excellent Majesty by and with the advice and consent of the Lords and Commons in this p[re]sent Parliament assembled and by the authority of the same That your Majesty may issue out such and so many severall Commissions under your Majesties Great Seale of England into the severall Counties Cities Towns corporate and all other places in England and Wales and Towne of Berwick upon Tweed directed to such persons as your Majesty shall thinke fit for the receiving of such subscriptions as your Majesties good subjects shall voluntary offer for supply of your Majesties pressing occasions and likewise to issue such other Commissions to such other persons as your Majesty shall thinke fitt for collecting and receiving the moneys so subscribed the acquittance of which respective Receivers or of any one of them are immediately to be made and given without any fee upon payment made and shall bee an absolute discharg for the su[m]m soe subscribed And in case such subscriptions shall upon any occasion be returned into the Court of Exchequer or any other place the payment thereof shall be likewise returned together with the same Provided that no process shall issue out of the Exchequer against any person so subscribing but within two yeares next after the passing of this Act

II. Commissioners to meet and may sever themselves.

Commissioners to give Notice of Meetings.

And for the better execution of the said service the said Commissioners of the Counties Cities Towns corporate and all other places aforesaid respectively shall and are hereby enjoyned withall convenient speed after the issuing out and receipt of the said respective Commissions to meet togeather at the most usuall and common place of meeting within each of the said Counties Cities Towns corporate and all other places and the said Commissioners or soe many of them as shall be present at the said first generall meeting or the major part of them may by theire consents and agreements sever themselves into Hundreds Rapes Wapentakes Wards and other places within theire respective limits in such manner and form as to them shall seeme expedient And shall likewise from time to time give notice of the respective times and places of theire meetings to the end that any persons bodies politique or corporate may if they please resort to them and make such offers or present to your Majesty as theire owne hearts shall prompt them to

III. Limitation of Present from Peers and Commoners.

Provided alwaies that no person not being a Peer of this Realm shall in such Offer or present to your Majesty exceed the sum of two hundred pounds nor any Peere of this Realm the su[m]m of four hundred pounds

IV. How long such Commissions to be effectual.

Provided alsoe That no Commissions to be issued out by vertue of this Act shall be of force or continue as to the receiving of any moneys or subscriptions for moneys after the feast of St John the Baptist which shall be in the yeare of our Lord One thousand six hundred sixty and two.

V. Such Aids not to be without Authority of Parliament, nor to be drawn into Example.

And be it hereby declared that no Commissions or Aids of this nature can be issued out or levied but by Authority of Parliament And that this Act and the supply hereby granted shall not be drawne into example for the time to come.